Heads Artist: Kate Traumann Steinitz (American, born Germany, 1889–1975)


Prints and Drawings

Käte Steinitz studied under Lovis Corinth in Berlin before moving to Hanover in 1917. There she thrived under the influence of modernism and met Kurt Schwitters, with whom she and Theo van Doesburg collaborated on the book Modern Typography. Steinitz shared with Schwitters the belief that abstraction and realism were not conflicting practices. Heads and the other two works by Steinitz in the Société Anonyme Collection, however, belie any aesthetic compatibility she might have shared with van Doesburg or Schwitters. Her works can be more clearly understood as influenced by the emotive palette and mannered representational style of German Expressionism. Due to the hardships of World War II, Steinitz immigrated to the United States in 1935 with her husband. They settled in New York where she established herself as the chairman of the New Americans group that exhibited at the World’s Fair in New York in 1940. In the early 1940s, they moved farther west, eventually settling in Los Angeles, where Steinitz came to focus her creative energies as a librarian and scholar.


Watercolor and gouache on paper


sheet: 21.6 × 28.7 cm (8 1/2 × 11 5/16 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of the Estate of Katherine S. Dreier

Accession Number



20th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.


  • Ruth L. Bohan et al., The Société Anonyme: Modernism for America, ed. Jennifer Gross, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2006), 183, 206, ill.

Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type



Women artists


Signed in black ink LR: "K. Steinitz 25"

Technical metadata and APIs


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